COVID-19: A time to stop and pray

By Patrick*, a Pioneers mobiliser in Europe

In days of uncertainty and change, it is always good to be reminded of unchanging truths. As followers of Jesus, we are encouraged to cry out to our God, knowing that He is near, never leaving nor forsaking us. This promise still holds despite COVID-19.

Ground to a sudden halt

Here in the UK and Ireland we have been greatly impacted by the coronavirus. Who would have believed only a short time ago that church activities would close, that meeting in groups would be banned and that the opportunity to worship physically together would stop?

We are certainly living in different days. However, God is at work in the midst of our trials. Just because we can’t meet in a building doesn’t mean we can’t be part of extending His Kingdom. As many of us come away from the treadmill of life and experience a much slower pace of life, we have an opportunity to spend quality time with Christ.

How can we best use this time?

We can still be involved in mission as we all have more time to focus on prayer. These are days of being able to spend more time in His presence.

A George Müller quote comes to mind:

‘I am glad that I learned the importance of ministering in God’s power alone. I can do all things through Christ, but without Him, I can accomplish nothing.’ George Müller

Is God teaching us afresh to look outside of ourselves, that on our own we can accomplish nothing? We can sometimes forget that the power for ministry comes from Almighty God and only things accomplished through our Saviour prove fruitful.

Could the Lord use this time to remind us all of who He is, the great I AM. Is he urging us to refocus our vision on Jesus, so that we may cast our all before Him?

Where there’s a will, there’s a way

I hope that after the initial shock, that we have all found ways to keep praying and worshipping the Saviour. Being stuck at home shouldn’t stop us seeking His face and hearing from His Word.

Having access to wonderful technology also opens up ways for us to hear sermons and teaching online. After all, God continues to speak. We just have to find ways to tune in and listen.

The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
Psalm 145:8 (NIV)

How to pray for Kingdom impact

Since we have more time to focus on prayer, let’s use it to impact the nations. Through our intercession, we can reach and bless the world even while being stuck indoors.

Would you pray specifically for the Arab world?

  • Pray for places like Yemen where a very small church struggles in a chaotic time of crisis.
  • Pray for believers from a Muslim background that God would sustain them as they seek to witness for Him – many being the only one who trusts Christ in their family or community.
  • Pray for cross-cultural workers who are needing the Lord’s wisdom to make key decisions about plans that will affect family and ministry
  • Pray for Muslims who are very fearful during this time. May the Lord speak to each one about the hope, comfort and eternal security found in Christ.

Keeping perspective

I would personally like to thank all our supporters for your prayerful and practical support, which are very much appreciated.

I would like to encourage you to keep perspective. The work goes on. God is still drawing Muslims to faith in Jesus Christ. The harvest truly is plentiful, and we all need to earnestly pray for more labourers to share the love of Jesus across the Muslim world. Many are yet to hear about the the Son of God, who gave His life as a ransom for many. May the Lord use this time to bring us all closer to Himself, in worship, in love and in praise. To Him alone be all the glory.

*Names and library image used for illustrative purposes only.

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